Stupid Little Things

Even though many manufacturers go about their daily business as if they float above us mortals, silly mistakes are a common thing. The same annoyances keep appearing over and over again. The problem lays in their inability and lack of communication with the "final customer" of their products. Authorized dealers are not good council, their main concern is making money (understandable). Big collectors are of no use either. Collectors can't wear the watch long enough to give useful feedback. The press is of no help either, they are concerned with publicity.

Here are three of the very annoying things that are continuously repeated:

Automatic 8-day power reserves: Why add redundant automatic winding? Why make the movement thicker and add more things that could brake or go wrong? Trust me, there is no need for your 8, 7 or 10 day power reserve to be automatic. If winding a watch once a week is too much for you... then you are not worth owning any watch at all.

Manual Perpetual Calendars: Perpetual Calendars are delicate and are sometimes a nightmare to set properly. They should be on winders (if not worn regularly) all the time so that you don't have to go through setting it over and over again. If it's a manual wind then you will have to be very careful not to forget to wind it almost everyday. A true nightmare (especially if your perpetual doesn't even have a power reserve).

Manual wind with screw-down crown: Screwing and unscrewing a crown on a daly basis will wear the screw of the crown, eventually it will brake. If you have to use the crown often, you DON'T want it to be screw-down. These crowns where initially meant to increase waterproof ratings on automatic diver's watches and have no business in manual wind watches. Over a period of one year you will have to screw and unscrew the crown about 200 times. Eight-day power reserves are more acceptable with a screw-down crown.

These are some of the very annoying things that manufacturers in general keep doing. Unfortunately they keep pooping up.

It would be more productive to talk more to end consumers and less to their usual sources of information. Manufacturers make the mistake of talking to their dealers, their dealer's best customers (sometimes) and the specialized press. What is wrong whit this picture? The dealers and owners of the businesses see only big dollar signs when you talk to them about the big brands. Plus, most of the sales staff is inadequate to handle high-end watches. Their contribution is limited to retransmitting information that can be reinterpreted. The authorized dealer's best customers that get invited to cocktails and visits to the factories have usually a big collection to begin with (or else they would not get invited in the first place). These customers usually don't test-drive the watches sufficiently since they rotate the watches in their collection quite a lot. As a result, asking about the performance of a watch that has had about a week of wrist time per year is futile to say the least. Last but not least, the press. You can't ask somebody about an honest opinion when they are dependent on YOU buying publicity in their magazine. Would you say to a potential buyer that his/her product is terrible and you just don't want to see this in next month's issue? I think not.

I know that having everybody telling you what to do is difficult but listening sometimes could make a great difference.


Anonymous said...

I just want to agree with you!! Although this doesn't happen on every brand, it obviously reflects how "detail" the designers are. Having an exciting product on one hand, but overlooked in practical aspects. I can see many new products are focusing on Big cases and gimmicky features for marketing reasons. At the end, translate into big $$$. Nothing wrong with making $$$, but you don't want to spot this stupid little things...

Velociphile said...

Yep, brilliant post merely scratching the surface. I laughed at screw crown manuals too, but thought it was only me.


KronosClub said...

Thanks guys! Starting today we should make a list of these "stupid little things" although I fear it would be too long to be posted in a blog.

Wait! What about making a special page with all our favorite most annoying things in watches? Once we have a couple I could publish them , signed of course, in the KronosClub.

What do you think?

Anonymous said...

Super Support! Its good idea to post up all "stupid-little-thing" item list. It'll be very interesting to see what's on the list! I suggest a simple & straight to the point format:

1. Model
2. Particular
3. Reasons

PS. I'm no watch expert, but this may offend some of the WIS or die-hard brand fans. :P

KronosClub said...

Hmmm... let's start doing a list and submit them as they come along. I will makeup a page for that.

Send me the submissions via eMail. I will need a short description, a picture and the name with which you wish to sign the contribution with.

Let's see where this takes us...